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Tuesday, October 30, 2012


Okay, if you haven't heard of Ana White you are missing out.  I've been reading about all of her great online, free plans for pottery barn knock off furniture for years and I've finally taken the plunge- well, Mr. Right finally took the plunge.  Our first Ana White benches...
 I painted this one in a barnwood finish (it sold after 1 day at the shop)
And here is the black distressed finish.  We also made a tiffany blue bench, but it sold at our last show.  If you're interested in the plans visit Ana White Here.  We made our benches 5 feet long with a 2x6 top instead of 2x4.  We're hoping to try another Ana White plan next week, so I'll keep you posted.  Love, Kelly.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Spontaneous Love

I tend to work in sporadic shifts.  If something needs to get done, I go 100 miles an hour to finish it.  I work best under pressure. I’ve always been that way.
“Spontaneous!”  That’s what the counselor calls me.  He tells me my spontaneity is one of the reasons he fell in love with me.  Some days I think I appreciate this quality; while I’m trudging through task after task after task, but other days I wish I was more like him.
“Structured!”  That’s what I call the counselor. He is as reliable as the day is long.  He’s my rock.  He sets goals.  He has a clear outline where each day is going and everything on his list gets done.
I guess at the end of the day, we are both in the same place in our own individual accomplishments.  Children have been loved, read to, feed healthy food.  
Bills have been paid, work has been attended too, maybe a car has been washed or the lawn has been mowed, but lately, I’ve taken so much on I’ve let some of the basics go.
I stay up too late.
I’m tired and some mornings, need extra sleep.
And who makes up for it?  The counselor; without a complaint mind you.  He’s up early (he always has been an early riser) and gets the kids ready for school, reads scriptures, says prayers, tousles their hair and reminds them as they walk out the door “Remember, you’re a child of God.”
And I wake up and he says “Good morning, beautiful,” and then I look around and see all he has managed so I can sleep more.
I believe marriage works best when each partner is giving 100%.   I know marriage isn’t about keeping score, but I’m currently in the lagging position.  To be honest, I’ve been trying to keep up with him my entire marriage.  I just can’t seem to get to his level of efficiency and follow-through. 
This weekend, the counselor and I headed out the door for our weekly date.  We had a nice dinner, but I was deep in thought; trying to understand this man who gives so much and is still so happy.  Shouldn't he be irritated?  Upset?  But the counselor has never reacted with anger.  He doesn't have mood swings; he doesn't react with bouts of belly laughter or gut-wrenching tears like I do.  He's steady and constant.
“What are you thinking about?” he finally asked.
“I don’t know how you can do so much, and lately I’ve been slacking and it would almost be easier if you would just get mad or something.  You keep giving and doing and loving and I want to say I’m sorry.” 
And then he told me something that took my breath away. 
He said “Well, I love you.”
My eyes filled with tears.
The counselor is very expressive and there isn’t a day that goes by without him saying he loves me, but this time I felt those amazing three words in everything I am.  I had wondered why he does what he does and how he can pick up the pieces that sometimes I’m too tired to carry and he does it because he loves me.
Love is a beautiful thing.  Never have I heard a sweeter fairy tale.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Red velvet, dust and laminate, oh my!

When the counselor brought home this dresser for $60, I was a bit skeptical.  
Only the middle drawers came out (thanks to the handy work of someone who permanently drilled them in place), and the wood is that lovely 70’s laminate.  I had my work cut out for me, starting with hosing it down.
I let it dry in the sun, then start on some sanding to smooth things out.  Next, it was time to remove the red velvet in the three middle drawers.  
The fabric was easy enough to remove, 
but what should I replace it with?  
I wanted to stay neutral, but still artistic.  My neighbor the caterer has had a lot of success using vintage sheet music as lining in old furniture pieces. 
It’s an easy way to decorate with modge podge.
I also painted the fixtures silver.  Here’s the finished product. 
What do you think?
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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Smart Minds Think Alike

Kelly and I must have been in the same color zone this weekend.  
She painted a garage sale table she found to look like this:
And I painted a $6.00 dresser I found at the thrift store to look like this.
Mint green, barn red and sunny yellow?  What are the odds we would randomly pick the same colors?
The counselor restocked my space at Qcumberz this weekend and the dresser sold before he left.
A few months ago Ron, the owner of Qcumberz asked if I would help start a Qcumberz blog.
Click here to see it.  I'd love to know what you think.

EAT Table

I picked up a dining room table at a yard sale- no chairs included, so I thought I'd do something fun with the table- a statement piece to encourage shoppers to come into my space at the vintage market.  Here's how it turned out...

Wouldn't it be so cute with mismatched chairs in different colors?  To create this look I just painted the top of the table 3 different colors, applied large vinyl letters (22" tall x 9" wide) and then painted the whole table black.  I decided to heavily distress the table so that some of the color underneath would come through.  Here's a closer look...
So, the question is, did it sell?  Not at the market, but three hours after I listed it on craigslist for the same price- $75  Let me know what you think.  Love, Kelly.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Keeping It Simple with a Beautiful Antique

I recently found this beautiful antique dresser out while thrifting.  
The wood was gorgeous, but horribly scratched on the top and sides.  With it’s classic lines and detail, I decided to play it safe and paint it black with no distressing.  
It seems whatever errands I'm running, I always have time stop at a few thrift stores on my way home.  I'm so lucky to live in Mesa, AZ, town of dozens of thrift stores; almost one on every corner.  Here's what thrifting and a combined COSTCO errand looks like when I'm done.  I brought home the Crate and Barrel Ru (click here to read that post), a French provincial dresser and a week's worth of groceries all at the same time.   Chandler suggested we start putting groceries in the empty drawers of the dresser, but fortunately, it didn't get that desperate.
To read my latest blog post on the American Night Writers Association blog, click here.  
My book The Memory Catcher is now released.  To order your copy, click here.
What others are saying 

“The Memory Catcher is a revealing true story of how one diligent woman gathered accounts of spiritual visitations of unborn spirits and then became a champion of their cause in a society that rejects them.”    
– John Pratt, Ph.D 

“The Memory Catcher is a precious, uplifting love story as well as a study of prebirth angels. I thoroughly enjoyed it. This book is intimate, humble, picturesque, so that all things are visible through Sarah and Laura’s words – they write like an angel appears – always bridging two worlds.”    
– Carolyn Webb, Ph.D.

“Coming from the Light is a ground-breaking book concerning an extraordinary subject.” 
– Richard Paul Evans, New York Times Best-selling Author

“Sarah Hinze leads us into the next great area of research -- the study of where we come from.”
– Dr. Elisabeth K├╝bler-Ross

“After reading Sarah’s book ‘The Castaways’ I knew she was on an errand of the Lord.  Reading ‘The Memory Catcher’ I learned how her mission was revealed to her and gained insight on how seemingly small things can bring about God’s miracles. Only through her autobiography might you piece together the puzzle of seeing God’s hand guiding her life.  Her humble devotion to the unborn children is beautiful.”
                                                              – Darla Stephens 

“I have shared your book with a few people that have had miscarriages and have been going through extreme grief.  It has lifted and comforted each of them in knowing that they will have their little ones again.   One friend I had shared with told me that her daughter had been suffering for over a year and gone to several grief sessions with counselors and this book brought her more peace than any of the other sessions. I can’t thank you enough for the blessing you have been in my life and those of my family and friends with whom I have shared your books.”
                                                                                                                     – Linda Payne

“I wanted to send you personal note as to how much I enjoyed your autobiography, The Memory Catcher.  It was very well written and really came from the heart.  I loved it!  There were so many gems in there for my own personal life as to how you followed your promptings.”
                                                                                                           –Kathy Spendlove

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Thursday, October 18, 2012

Angels by artist Brian Kershisnik

When I was in Utah a few weeks ago I stopped into Desert Book (an LDS bookstore) to purchase some souvenirs for my kids when I saw a large painting.  
 ANGELS by Brian Kershisnik

I have never seen anything like it. 
I stared for quite sometime, overwhelmed at the personal meaning of the painting.  The baby held by legends of angel escorts is a beautiful portrayal of each persons journey’s from heaven to earth.  Each face is unique, each beautiful and each angel is on task to accomplish what has been assigned by Heavenly Father.  I wondered about the painter; this gifted artist and his testimony of where we come from before we’re born.  It was obvious to me how he felt about the gift of life.  It took the clerk some time to help me figure out the spelling of his last name, but I was persistent.  I wanted to know who he was.  After some time, we were able to decipher the letters of your name and I wrote it down.

I recently wrote Brian a letter, so I could tell him his painting took my breath away and I look at it often for inspiration as I assist my mom in her work with the unborn.  The goal of her research is to not only teach we come from heaven, but the sanctity of life as well.  In addition, the stories she collects and shares in her books have provided comfort to those who have lost their babies through miscarriage, stillbirth or abortion.

Brian, you have a special gift; one that I admire and greatly appreciate.  Thank you for sharing your talent with the world.
Please take a few minutes to watch Brian share his passion for painting.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

A Little Birdie Told Me...

You can score some amazing finds this weekend at the Junk Restore Vintage Market!  I've been crafting like crazy for the past two weeks getting ready to be a vendor.  Here's one of my favorite pieces...

This is a little (well, 2 foot x 2 foot might not be so little) sheet music bird sign I made this week. I'm trying to take $4,000 worth of merchandise for the 2 day event.  Tomorrow I'll be spending the day pricing and loading!  Come check out all the amazing stuff- 

Hope to see you there!  Love, Kelly.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Another New Rug

I live in a home with one large living room and no family room.  This is the room where we all gather, where we wrestle and tickle and knock each other down and where we kneel to pray at night before bed.
This living room has marble flooring and is not the softest place to fall.
Four years ago when we moved in, I wanted to find an enormous area rug, but they were so expensive.  The one I wanted, a blue shag beauty, was $800.
So, as a creature of habit, I did what I always do when I want something I can’t afford.
I started shopping thrift stores.
A few weeks later and for $19.99 at Salvation Army, I came home with this; a gorgeous contemporary rug.  Here it is already initiated into what life at my house is like
and dark enough to hide all the soon-to-be stains that come from a family my size.
I loved it when about a year later, I woke up to find my dog chewing on the corner of my gorgeous rug. After more investigating, I found three more problems.  It appeared my dog had taken liberty to chew each and every corner of the rug that night. 
I overlooked the destruction for a while, but I have my limits.  The defect finally got the best of me and I started looking again for another huge area rug.

Welcome rug #2, found at Mesa Thrift for $30.
This rug was even better.  Immaculate, softer, plusher and I liked the design even more then the other.  We rolled around on it, drank way too many juice sippies and eventually, it started looking well, used.
I had it professionally cleaned several times, but after two years, I was ready for something different.

Meet rug #3, also found at Mesa Thrift.
I saw it when I first walked in the thrift store and couldn’t believe it.  I have always wanted a thick shag rug, but I’ve never seen remotely this beautiful while thrifting.  Usually, the styling a find is a few years dated.  Was it too good to be true?  There were a few things I needed to check like if it was dirty, stained or falling apart.  In addition, it couldn’t smell like an animal shelter after a rain storm or a smoky bar on New Year’s Eve.  I started my inspection and realized this rug looked and smelled like new, without a single stain or mystery odor.  After my thorough inspection of the top, I turned it over to check out the bottom.  Was the stitching in tact?  No weird urine stains?  When I saw a tag, stating the manufacturer was Crate and Barrel I realized I had something of superior quality.  I had shopped new rugs and knew what they cost, but that was at World of Rugs and T.J. Maxx.  I had a feeling an 8x10 shag rug from Crate and Barrel like this cost around $1000 or more.
Mesa Thrift had it priced at $50.  SOLD!
Here she is, all gorgeous in my living room and getting initiated.  

It’s a bit like having a large shedding pet, but here’s hoping after we break her in, she’s a bit less hairy.
To read more about my rugs, click here and here.

Monday, October 15, 2012

My Weekend at Qcumberz and America's Taco Shop

Chandler and I filled the space last week at Qcumberz with some great trash. 
The counselor brought home these mid-century end tables and I painted them up funky colors.
I found this owl at the thrift store, and it wasn't until setting it up I noticed the skulls it was sitting on; perfect for Halloween, but still freaky.
This is an old radio cabinet I found for $15.  With the radio removed, it's just a cute entry table/dresser with great storage.  I painted it black and shabby chic-ed it.
This Drexel dresser was $45 and looks great painted paprika red.
This is an E. A Clores highboy dresser.  I priced it at $245, but on-line new it sells for $2,100.  
I found this beautiful iron scroll wall hanging at Goodwill.
And I love my teak kitchen island.  I polished it with some furniture oil and it is all cleaned up, priced at $45.
Our reward for all our hard work was lunch at America's Taco Shop, some of the best Mexican food in Phoenix.  There bean dip is so creamy.
I love going to Qcumberz.  The atmosphere is retro and anything goes, link these wooden King chairs.
this mid-century hutch and decor
or this swag leather lounge couch.
Qcumberz is in downtown Phoenix, off 7th st. and Camelback.  If you haven't visited yet, give them a try. You're sure to find something great.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Throwing Sticks at Sleep

One of the most interesting ordeals of being a writer is sleep, or lack of it.
I try to step away from my mind so I can sleep, but it seems to constantly be there.  I am forever creating plots full of conflict, personal struggle and intrigue; most especially when I lay in a dark quiet room listening to the sound of the counselor’s steady breathing.

Not being able to sleep started out as an annoying habit, but has turned almost debilitating. 
I’ve never been one to take drugs, but I’m seriously considering it.
Anyway, since I’m already here I thought I’d check in and say hello.
Hello, my friends.

I received a box of 100 books today, titled The Memory Catcher, a revealing true story of how author and researcher Sarah Hinze gathered accounts of spiritual visitations of unborn spirits and became a champion of their cause in a society that rejects them.  This is my mother’s life story and it was such a privilege to write it with her. 

I am beyond thrilled to hold a book I’ve worked so hard on and believe in so much.  I can’t wait to read it, again.  I will be taking it to the gym and reading it as I bounce up and down on the elliptical machine. Order your own copy by clicking here.

But now with The Memory Catcher published, I am working again on my other passion; Young Adult Fiction.  The best writing advice I received was at an ANWA (American Night Writers Association) Conference.  I apologize, I don’t remember what author spoke such fine wisdom, but the advice suggested good fiction writing was like putting a dog in a tree and throwing sticks at it.  What does that possible mean and should someone call the Animal Abuse Hotline?   No, because it’s just a visual as to what needs to be happening in a writer’s storyline.  If the conflict starts to lift, throw another stick at it.  Keep up the turmoil, the chaos and dysfunction; a.k.a think The Hunger Games. Now that’s throwing sticks at the dog!
I’ve started a new YA novel that has taken over my life.  My Dear Lucy is the working title.  The story is of a girl named Lucy who lives in a time when reading is illegal.  Lucy is a reader, hiding her skill and on the run from a variety of different rotten people.  Let’s just say, she’s having plenty of sticks thrown at her.  I can be so mean, but make note I love Lucy.  So far gypsies are trying to kill her because they think she’s a witch, a mysterious book she’s been hiding her entire life is about to be discovered by the wrong people and she’s falling in love with the man who’s kidnapped her.  Eventually, with a few twists and turns in the plot, she’ll not only find out how her gift can bless her nation, but she’ll play a vital role in helping Martin Luther start the protestant revolution.

My gift for my 40th birthday, the gift I wanted to give myself was 40 pages of my new manuscript.  Writing a book is like trying to lose weight; it’s a numbers game.  Sometimes the numbers speak louder then they need too, because what they represent is some sort of progress.  Well, like my never-ending weight loss goals, I did not reach my goal, but am happy to report today I was able to write to page 40. 
My Dear Lucy is going incredibly well and I’m pushing myself to finish it in the next few weeks.  Something I learned from writing The Memory Catcher is books are started and eventually, books are finished.  I have a publisher I love working with, which is another bonus I never had before. 

I feel I have a grasp of how overwhelming this whole process can be, minus the sleep problem of course.  So, my dear friends, I wish you a good night, or a good morning where ever you are.  I will open my manuscript and work until my eyelids start to droop and sleep finally kicks in.  

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

So my grandson is now 7 months old!  Can you believe it's been 7 months?  The worst part is that I just finished the last project for his nursery.  If you didn't read about how my daughter was induced 4 weeks early and how I was in a panic to get the nursery done you can read it here  Obviously, the cruise must have put me into a relaxed state, because here we are 7 months later finishing the nursery.  The last project is his name over the crib...

The letters were given to my daughter at her baby shower and we knew we just needed to bulk them up a bit.  (You can read about her "under construction" baby shower here)  So Mr. Right assembled a 3 fence board sign which I painted black.  We then attached the letters with screws- here's a closer look...

I also wanted to show you the amazing dresser we found at a garage sale for $125- no painting necessary...
The best part, it came with a mirror that I turned into a chalkboard and sold for $95- so the dresser was really $30!  Here's an overall of the room...

The rocker was purchased by my daughter at a yard sale for just $5- I painted it black and great grandma made a cushion to match the bedskirt and bumper pads (the bumper pads have now been removed as Baby Braxton likes to pull off the ties)  The rug (should have taken a close up) is made of strips of leather- Mr. Right and I picked it up for $20 at a garage sale.  So there you have it.  We like to call his room, Industrial Chic.  Let me know what you think.  Love, Kelly.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Drexel Update

I love quality furniture, so when I found this little Drexel end table, I was happy to bring it home.
It was bit worn and faded, so I sanded it down and painted it this great blue.
Now, I'm taking it down to Qcumberz.
To read my latest blog post on the American Night Writer's Association Blog, click here.
To pre-order my book The Memory Catcher, click here.
Have a happy weekend and get out there.  It should be great for yard sales!
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